Just when you thought you’ve heard of all the benefits of coconut oil, here’s a new one that can get you surprised. Did you know that coconut oil can help toughen your teeth and solve other dental problems?
That’s right! Coconut oil can help with your oral hygiene. Let’s examine how it can help our teeth and how we can add it to our oral hygiene routine.
3 Ways Coconut Oil Benefits Your Teeth And Gums
1. Destroys Harmful Mouth Bacteria
Coconut oil contains a medium-chained fatty acid called lauric acid. This acid is believed to have antimicrobial properties.1
Lauric acid can fight harmful bacteria present in the mouth that causes bad breath, tooth decay, and other gum diseases. Streptococcus bacteria are common inhabitants of the mouth. Scientists found that enzyme-modified coconut oil strongly inhibited the growth of most strains of Streptococcus bacteria including Streptococcus mutans – an acid-producing bacterium that is a major cause of tooth decay.
2. Reduces Plaque And Fights Gum Diseases
The main cause of gum diseases is the buildup of plaque in the mouth caused due to harmful bacteria. Gingivitis is a gum disease that causes inflammation of the gums in your mouth. If left unattended, the infection can cause the gums to separate from the teeth.
Using coconut oil can decrease this plaque present in the mouth. A study shows the effect of coconut oil on plaque-induced gingivitis.2
This study involved 60 adolescent boys and girls in the age group of 16–18 years with plaque-induced gingivitis. Oil pulling or oil swishing therapy was included in their oral hygiene routine for a period of 30 days. Oil pulling or oil swishing is rinsing or swishing oil in the mouth. Results of this study show that there was a significant decrease in the plaque from day 7 onward and continued to decrease over the study period.
3. Strengthens Your Teeth
Your teeth are made up of the elements that make your bones; therefore, you require a certain amount of dietary calcium to keep your bones and teeth healthy.
Coconut oil helps your body to process and use minerals like calcium and magnesium that are required to maintain and strengthen teeth.
In order to maintain and strengthen your teeth, you can consume 1–3 tablespoons of just the coconut oil or mix it with your food.3
How To Use Coconut Oil For Better Teeth
You can use coconut oil by a process called oil pulling. Oil pulling, also known as kavala graha, is an ancient ayurvedic dental technique that cleanses the body of toxins and supports dental and overall health. Results of a study also show how this technique can maintain oral hygiene against dental caries.4
Follow these steps to carry out coconut oil pulling technique.
- Put a tablespoon of coconut oil in your mouth.
- Swish it around in your mouth for 5–20 minutes, allowing oil to move between your teeth.
- Spit out the oil.
- Brush your teeth.
You can also include coconut oil in your daily oral hygiene as a toothpaste. Here’s how you can prepare the toothpaste.5
- 100 ml virgin coconut oil
- 100 ml baking soda
- 15–25 drops of peppermint oil (depending on your taste)
- 5 ml stevia
How To Use
- Combine all the above ingredients together.
- Beat the mixture together to get a light texture.
- Store the mixture in a jar.
- Dab the paste onto the toothbrush and brush as usual.
Now that you know how coconut oil can benefit your teeth and gums, add it to your oral hygiene. It is unlikely that you will face an allergic reaction; however, if you do, stop the treatment immediately and consult a doctor.
|↑1||Huang, Chifu B., Yelena Alimova, Taylor M. Myers, and Jeffrey L. Ebersole. “Short-and medium-chain fatty acids exhibit antimicrobial activity for oral microorganisms.” Archives of oral biology 56, no. 7 (2011): 650-654.|
|↑2||Peedikayil, Faizal C., Prathima Sreenivasan, and Arun Narayanan. “Effect of coconut oil in plaque related gingivitis—A preliminary report.” Nigerian medical journal: journal of the Nigeria Medical Association 56, no. 2 (2015): 143.|
|↑3||Brandon Britt. Coconut Oil for Health: 100 Amazing and Unexpected Uses for Coconut Oil. Adams Media, 2015.|
|↑4||Thaweboon, Sroisiri, Jurai Nakaparksin, and Boonyanit Thaweboon. “Effect of oil-pulling on oral microorganisms in biofilm models.” Asia J Public Health 2, no. 2 (2011): 62-66.|
|↑5||Ashburner Gene. Coconut Oil: Amazing Health, Skin and Cooking Benefits – Recipes Included. CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, 2014.|